Woman in Wolcott accused of leaving her 2-year-old child alone while she went to a store
WOLCOTT, CT (WFSB) - A woman in Wolcott was charged after her young son was found wandering in a front yard, wet and crying, while she went to a store, police said.
Amanda Milligan, 28, was charged with risk of injury to a minor.
Police said they were called to an address on Long Meadow Drive on Thursday just before 9:40 p.m.
A neighbor reported that a 2-year-old child was wandering in a front yard alone and barefoot. He was only wearing shorts and a t-shirt. The neighbor picked the child up and called police.
When officers arrived, they said they learned that the neighbor had heard a dog barking outside. The neighbor reported that she went outside to see why, and saw her neighbor’s dog come running from the next-door backyard, and the crying child was following the dog.
An officer took the child and comforted him until his father arrived.
Other officers found the front door to the home where the boy lived was unlocked, and the back door was open. They said they entered to house to check for parents, and possibly other unattended children, but found the house empty except for two other dogs. While the officers were checking the house, the mother, identified as Milligan, returned home and asked why officers were at her home.
She was informed that her son was found wandering outside.
Milligan told officers that she had left her son alone because he was “fine watching TV.” She told them she thought her husband was on the way home, so she left him alone and went to Petco. She said she found that Petco was closed, so she stopped at a gas station to take pictures of her car, then went home.
The father of the child was contacted and immediately drove home from work in New Haven. He told officers that he was supposed to work all night.
Milligan was arrested and transported to Wolcott police headquarters for booking.
“You’re a parent, take care of your child, it’s your job,” said Wolcott Police Chief Ed Stephens. “It’s scary, I mean, has this happened before? It’s very scary of the tragedy that could have occurred.”
Stella Page says after living next to the Milligans for over a year, this all seems out of character.
“They never leave the baby alone. every time i see her in driveway, the baby plays out in the driveway, or out on the deck, she’s always out there with the baby,” said Stella.
She only had good things to say about them.
“As a matter of fact, last week, I was cutting the grass. He come out and says to me, stop, I’ll cut the grass for you. He was a very nice person,” Stella said.
A $1,500 bond was placed on her. She was released after posting it.
The Department of Children and Families was notified and began an investigation, according to Wolcott police.
DCF released a statement on the incident:
“The Department of Children and Families adheres to confidentiality under the requirements of Connecticut General Statutes 17a-28.
What we can confirm is the Department has received a report and we are currently in the process of conducting a joint investigation with law enforcement. We are unable to comment any further at this time.
This is a good reminder to family members, professionals and other concerned citizens that protecting children is everyone’s responsibility.
Allegations of child maltreatment can be made to the Careline at 1-800-842-2288. The Careline is open 24 hours a day 365 days a year and callers can remain anonymous. Supports can be accessed for families by dialing 211.”
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